Woolgrowers from across Australia have enjoyed gaining a great understanding of the Chinese wool industry during the recent AWI study trip to China.
Close to 80 per cent of Australia’s raw wool production is exported to China for early stage processing.
Half of this wool is consumed in China at retail, making the Chinese wool processing and retail economy extremely important to Australia’s $3 billion wool industry.
Funding their own trip, woolgrowers toured and met with key vertical mills such as Nanshan and Sunshine, key processors such as Tianyu and knitting facilities such as the Xinao/Woolmark Knitwear Development Centre.
In Shanghai, Nanjing and Hong Kong growers met with key AWI/Woolmark staff as well as retailers and designers who all work to sell wool in this key market.
Daniel Rogers from Balmoral, Victoria said the tour gave him a greater understanding of the passion and expertise involved with taking wool from its raw state right through to a beautiful garment at retail.
“It was an amazing experience to see the enormous investment that the Chinese industry has made in wool and their love of Australian Merino wool,” said Mr Rogers.
“It really has given me a lot of confidence in the future of the industry and to see so many Chinese designers, retailers and brands wanting to use the product we produce was really good. The future looks bright.”
Those that travelled to China included:
- VIC: Warren Russell, Daniel Rogers, Sue & Rod Miller, Cameron Mibus
- SA: Syd Lawrie, Tom Davidson
- WA: Todd Mullan, Mitchell Hogg
- NSW: Ed Morgan, Alex Willson, Ian Cameron
- TAS: Anna Cotton
Encouraging the next generation of wool industry workforce participants is critical to the prosperity of the Australian wool industry.
AWI aims to help improve the engagement of young people interested in the wool industry, thereby developing and retaining the skills the wool industry needs to be innovative in response to new challenges.